Birth Injury: What is Brachial Plexus?

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The birthing process is traumatic for both mother and child; thus, special care needs to be taken during delivery.  When childbirth becomes extremely difficult, newborns are vulnerable to a number of injuries.  Brachial Plexus is one specific birth injury associated with difficult labor. Brachial Plexus is defined as trauma of the nerves in the shoulder, spine, arm, and/or hands. Birth injuries of this nature can cause long-lasting, permanent damage.

During labor an infant’s shoulders can get stuck in the birth canal, and doctors may have to use force to free the baby.  If a doctor fails to use the standard of care required in this situation, the child can be at risk for serious injury and permanent damage.

Brachial Plexus can be caused under the following circumstances:

  • When excessive force is used to pull on a baby’s shoulders during a head-first delivery
  • When excessive force is used to pull on a baby’s raised arms during a breech birth

Brachial Plexus injuries can take different forms. Brachial Plexus is classified by the amount of nerve damage in the baby’s arm.

The following types of birth increase the risk of Brachial Plexus:

  • Larger than normal newborn size
  • Breech birth
  • Difficulty in releasing the shoulder after the head of the infant has come out

Symptoms of birth injury resulting in nerve damage are immediately apparent after birth and may include:

  • Baby fails to move arms or hands
  • Baby’s arm is bent at the elbow against body
  • Baby has a lack of grip on the side that is injured

The prognosis for most babies that have suffered Brachial Plexus is usually mild, and a large majority of these infants will recover within six months. Other children suffering from Brachial Plexus will face long-term effects, with complications including:

  • Permanent muscle contractions
  • Partial or permanent loss of nerve function
  • Arm paralysis
  • Spinal cord injury

If your child has suffered nerve damage as the result of a birth injury, you and your family may be facing a lifetime of medical care. You shouldn’t have to tackle this financial burden alone. Call me right away at 1 (877) 944-4373. As your Ohio birth injury lawyer, I’ll be there for you, and I’ll Make Them Pay!®

Author: Tim Misny | For more than 33 years, personal injury lawyer Tim Misny has represented the injured victim in birth injurymedical malpractice, and catastrophic injury/wrongful death cases, serving “Cleveland, Akron/Canton, Columbus & Cincinnati, Ohio.” You can reach Tim by email at tmisny@misnylaw.com or call at 1 (877) 944-4373.

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Birth Injury: What is Brachial Plexus?
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This page consist of very important information about Brachial Plexus birth injuries. If you suspect your child was injured at birth, it is imperative to contact a top birth injury attorney immediately. Tim Misny has been one of the best birth injury lawyers in the state of Ohio for more than 34 years.
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